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I think 田舎 itself is not derogatory. And if you talk about 田舎 in general, it's definitely not a derogatory word. But if you related 田舎 to some people, it can sound like derogatory. For example あの人は田舎から来た. (But this may be the same in any language...) And the word 田舎 also can be used like an adjective meaning less developed (city or town). For example, ...


Only some words derived from 田舎, such as 「田舎っぺ」「田舎者【いなかもの】」「田舎臭【いなかくさ】い」, are derogatory. I think 田舎 itself is not derogatory. Although this word typically has the negative sense by its nature, saying 「私は田舎が好きだ」 or 「私は田舎で暮らしたい」 is perfectly correct. One euphemistic expression that means 田舎 is 地方【ちほう】. 「地方に住んでいる人」 usually means a person who lives outside ...

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